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Frontier Airlines lost and found is accused of theft again; Niles jeweler’s $50K claim still pending

CLEVELAND — A new lawsuit against Frontier Airlines Inc. for missing property bears some similarity to a case involving a Niles jeweler, the latter of which appears stalled in the county courts.

Timothy and Tina May, the former of whom is the proprietor of Mr. T’s Heart of Gold and Diamonds along Youngstown Warren Road in Niles, according to Ohio Secretary of State records, sued the Colorado-based airline in February.

They alleged the airliner lost or allowed an employee to steal $50,000 worth of jewelry that was in their carry-on luggage during their flight from Florida to Cleveland two years ago.

Mahoning County court records show civil process servers failed to serve the company at its Denver address. No new filings have been made since March.

The Mays, who do not appear to have retained an attorney, have not returned calls seeking comment on the case.

In Ohio’s Northern District federal court, attorneys for George McCall of Lorain claimed the airline lost $10,000 cash that was in the man’s stowed luggage during his October flight from Cleveland Hopkins International Airport to Las Vegas — money that had been gifted to McCall and which he intended to spend there, said his attorney, Anthony Baker of Sheffield.

After McCall arrived in Las Vegas, he found a note inside his suitcase indicating the Transportation Security Administration had opened and searched it. The $10,000 was missing, according to the suit.

McCall filed a claim with the TSA, which was rejected. The TSA claims video surveillance of an agent searching McCall’s bag proves the agent isn’t responsible for the loss of the money, but Baker said he hasn’t seen that footage.

McCall has traveled to Las Vegas multiple times a year for the past 20 years, according to claim filings by his attorney. He told Mahoning Matters McCall never had issues flying with that kind of money.

McCall’s suit, filed in March and moved to the federal court late last month, brings counts including conversion and theft against Frontier, alleging an airline employee stole or lost the money, and seeks up to $15,000, which includes damages.

Frontier has also disavowed the loss, Baker said. He learned legal clauses on passenger tickets absolve the airliner of certain losses.

Frontier Airlines lost and found liability limit is $3,800 per passenger, according to the ticket terms and conditions, “except for mobility aids and devices.”

“It’s kind of self-serving to say, ‘We’re not responsible for anything that’s in your bag that’s over a certain amount’,” Baker said. “It seems … if I work at Frontier and I get word that [a baggage worker] stole money and there’s nothing the customer can do, that’s going to spread and people are going to continue to do it.”

A Frontier spokesperson declined to comment, as the matter is in active litigation.

Neither Frontier nor the TSA have responded to McCall’s court filing, despite being served the case, so Baker said he’s expecting a default judgment.

The Mays, in the Mahoning County suit, claimed their carry-on luggage was moved by a flight attendant. The luggage ultimately found its way to Frontier’s Denver headquarters and was later returned to the Youngstown FedEx office inside a shipping box. The Mays found that box had been opened and resealed, and the jewelry was missing.

Their suit seeks $50,000 in actual damages, along with punitive damages to be determined by a jury.

According to a recent consumer report from the U.S. Department of Transportation, Frontier Airlines mishandled slightly fewer pieces of baggage on average in October, compared to nine other larger airlines.

American Airlines, which has the highest baggage volume among the airlines reviewed, was ranked the worst for mishandled baggage.

Allegiant Air, which has some of the lowest baggage volume — but not much lower than Frontier’s volume — was ranked the best.

Lost something at Airport or in a flight? Click here to report online

Dedicated investigation manager for every successful lost report. We work with more than 15000+ Airports & Airlines lost and found offices worldwide. Increase chance of locating your lost property TODAY.

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